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Florida firm on Board for Big High Speed Rail Projects

TexasFlorida firm on Board for Big High Speed Rail Projects

Paul Curtis, Curtoom Companies and L. Brain Ehrler, Burns Group, Engineering Consultants for project management oversight support services to federal Transit Administration High Speed Rail Program modernization.

      DALLAS, TX — Florida business owner Paul Curtis, President and CEO of Curtoom Companies, has forged a partnership with transportation leader Burns Group of Philadelphia, PA and landed a contract to provide project management oversight (PMO) support services under an indefinite delivery indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contract on a nationwide basis for a period of 5 years.

Of the many possible future projects is the Texas Triangle High Speed Rail system project. Once constructed, the high speed rail system will feature superfast trains that will take passengers between Dallas, Houston and San Antonio at speeds up to 200 miles per hour.  http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/unfairpark/texastrianglemap.JPG

“Burns Group is a proven innovator when it comes to small business relationships and partnering,” Curtis says. “United States high speed rail systems are now shifting into high gear across much of the nation for a 2050 completion date. http://www.ushsr.com/ushsrmap.html We had past setbacks in Florida projects due to lack of funding, but embrace this new opportunity with great enthusiasm. “

Curtoom Companies won multi-year contracts on Florida High Speed Rail projects twice in past years. However, each time projects were foiled due to funding concerns.

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) defines oversight as a continuous review and evaluation of FTA processes to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements.  Oversight of grantee project management focuses on managing of major investments (New Starts, rail modernization, etc.) in transit projects.  This activity serves to supplement FTA technical staff to evaluate grantee capability to successfully implement these major transit projects.  Other activities are also involved, such as design constructability, change order reviews, and value engineering submittals.

“The projects”, Curtis explained, “range from $25 million to over $10 billion. At present, the US High Speed Rail corridor runs from coast to coast and from Mexico to Canada.”

Curtis, a military veteran and gubernatorial appointee says the FTA veteran small business program was very helpful in this project and is among the most effective of all federal agencies in working with diverse groups of veteran, small, and disadvantaged businesses. There are many challenges for evolving small firms. Those owned and controlled by a single shareholder must stay safe from business risk, yet continue pushing the envelope on innovation.

“Burns Group, an incumbent FTA consultant and national high speed rail trailblazer, had their choice from hundreds of small businesses as partners” Curtis said. “We at Curtoom Companies are both delighted and honored they would select our firm after months of deliberation.”

Paul Curtis is a 1979 Civil Engineering Technology alumnus at Florida A&M University and past Adjunct Professor. He holds more construction contractor licenses than any other African American in The State of Florida. Curtis, is a member of the Transportation Research Board (www.trb.org) . The Disadvantage Business Enterprise (DBE) Committee Curtis serves on provides expertise to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. His committee makes recommendations to U.S. DOT and Federal Highway Administration on issues relating to State DBE programs. Curtis is also a member of the American Legion Veterans Small Business Task Force in Washington, DC.

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